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Post-Legislative Scrutiny

Volume 475: debated on Thursday 8 May 2008

32. To ask the Leader of the House what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of post-legislative scrutiny undertaken by the House and its Committees. (204047)

The Government published their plans for strengthening the process of post-legislative scrutiny of Acts in a White Paper in March. This reflects the Government’s agreement with other commentators that post-enactment consideration of how Acts have worked in practice has been something of a gap in the scrutiny of Government activity. It responds in particular to the report of the Law Commission on this subject in 2006 (following an inquiry undertaken by the Commission at the Government’s specific request).

Under the new process, the relevant Government Department will—from now on, beginning with Acts which received Royal Assent in 2005—be submitting to the appropriate departmental Select Committee a memorandum, three to five years after Royal Assent, summarising the steps taken in implementation of each Act and giving a preliminary assessment of how it is working out in practice.